Monday, December 21, 2009

A Family VacAdventure

From Family Vacation


What an adventure... Now, this is blog is usually something I would put on my family blog, Allenladies.blogspot.com but because it really is an African experience, I thought ya'll must get a look at this!) A video alone won't suffice, do justice or sufficiently tell the story of what we experienced but wow, it comes close! (If you are receieving this by email, click on this link to take you to the video or go here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XiahekKRF70)

We went to Lake Tanganyika (the lake also borders Congo and Tanzania) for a vacation because it was the only lake without hippos or crocodiles. From the pictures alone, it looked like Tahiti or Hawaii. We had our own private beach for four days, a chalet that was made of bamboo and a luxury camping experience, complete with a huge monitor lizard,
From Family Vacation
a (non-biting:) green snake, and a real, far away bush experience.

First, it took us three days to get there. We drove 6 hours the first day (mostly due to a missed turn because their was *gasp* no sign to tell us to turn-I know, surprise in Africa), 10 the next and two the next, plus a 1.5 hours boat ride. The place was remote, in it was a beach secluded by itself, but on both sides, there were villages, and Zambian would saunter across our beach, maybe 10 a day, to get from one village to the next.
From Family Vacation
We stayed in a chalet with no door and no windows. The first night the thunder and lightning and the wind was a bit surreal and close.

It was a crazy experience in a lot of ways. We were one with nature. And we quickly realized how bush we really were. If something were to go wrong, we were out there, at least 3 hours before we could get picked. Going into it, I don't think we fully realized it all going into it what we were getting ourselves into and when we did, boy did we pray!

We learned a few things: one, that bush missionaries who are out there really need our prayers. There is nothing you can do but pray. We prayed more during this vacation because of the elements, the possible sickness, the possible dangers of people and even spiritual elements that we felt present. It was much more than we planned on.

Overall, though, we had so much fun swimming. When you grow up swimming in a lake and you live near a lake your whole life, you really miss it. And the water was so warm and clear and the beach was so soft, it was a remarkable time. They even had tropical fish to watch while snorkeling. I had many highlights in my time there, but one of them was watching Rhoda snorkel for the first time. A whole new world was opened to her.

Other highlights include a couple evenings where Stephanie and I just talked. There was nothing to do after nightfall being all in one room, and so we just talked. Amazing how many distractions of life keep us from the most pure and wonderful things of a relationship where two people just talk.

Of course it went by so fast, but the memories exist... It was what our family needed at the end of a long/short year full of lots of people, hosting, activity and ministry... It wasn't too restful, but it was full of family time and that was great. We were a bit relieved as we boarded the boat to go home, but also grateful that we jumped both feet out of our comfort zone with five young kids. We learned a lot about ourselves on this trip. Our family grew up a bit on this trip and for that we are thankful.
From Family Vacation
Thanks for praying... The adventure in Africa continues!





1 comment:

Jeff K. said...

Thanks for sharing! Jojo is very cute there at the end, but Rhoda wearing the swim mask was a hoot!
- Jeff